Pat Blythe – Pomp & Circumstance…..Rival Sons…..the end of summer……

Four weeks!!! Four whole weeks….over in flash, just like summer!!! The column hiatus has now ended and WE’RE BACK!  Yep it’s been a busy (and sweaty) summer with loads going on, on all fronts, both personal and professional. I must confess, Fall is my favourite season. The colours are outstanding and the cooler weather (with sunshine) actually makes me feel cozy.

Okay……so where to begin….I’ll work my way backwards… concert at time.

©Charles Shultz

In a nutshell I’ve photographed a family reunion in St. Catharines, acquired a temporary roommate, conducted two interviews, attended court to hear a final verdict of accusations against  local club owner (charges dismissed), celebrated a few birthdays, attended and photographed a slew of shows including Rival Sons, Jeff Jones Trio, Eddie and Quincy Jazz Review and Blue Rodeo, had my daughter here for a visit from Thailand/Bali, photographed Eddie Bullen’s Smooth Jazz Cruise, took a wee two-day getaway to Prince Edward County (fondly known as PEC) to visit friends I hadn’t seen in over three years, headed to London to visit my mom for a week and caught up with a few friends as well, FINALLY watched the two Beatles’ movies I had not seen (Help and A Hard Day’s Night….I prefer the latter but then I’m partial to B&W) accompanied by a lovely dinner, spend a fabulous overnight at a B&B in Niagara Falls as the guest of a girlfriend, working towards a basement renovation (for aforementioned roommate) AND formed a business partnership for two separate ventures, one of which launched today. Some nutshell eh?

So let’s start with business venture number one.

What’s been my refrain for the past four years? Ya…..well I’m now dining on those words. So, who’s who? Well, I’m Circumstance because that’s what I do. More like photojournalism candids with panache. …..and Pomp? Well, Pomp is a guy… very good friend Karl Anderson, wedding photographer extraordinaire. He does all the “froo froo” portrait stuff while I get to saunter around and catch Uncle Bill doing the boogaloo with Aunt Edith (and you just know Uncle Bill’s feet haven’t touched a dance floor for the past 60 years).


Wedding photography is an art form in and of itself. Understanding settings and set up, lenses, lighting, poses, angles and endeavouring to make every wedding unique. It takes years of experience (and patience) to make everyone looking red carpet stunning. It’s a very distinctive “eye”, appreciation and understanding of this very special day.


Me? I walk into a club, make sure my camera settings are what I want, screw on the lens that I need and start shooting. I have to live with (and so do the performers) the existing lighting and setup. Everything is spur-of-the-moment action shots. No prep and certainly no “froo froo”. Standard band apparel? Let me put it this way, there’s no red carpet.

I’m excited and looking forward to applying my eye to something completely different. Lessons from Karl on camera settings and lighting have already commenced. I really should have paid more attention to Chris. Sigh. I have a LOT to learn. Shameless plug…..for a distinctive and exclusive edge to your wedding photos, do look us up @pompandcircumstancephotos on FB or contact Karl directly at 647.241.8576. to arrange a consultation. The website will up shortly.

Business venture number two will have to wait. Formal announcement coming soon.

Rival Sons…..

On stage at the CNE

Currently on their Feral Roots tour, they stopped into Toronto for a show that rocked the entire CNE. Performing to a roaring crowd, the entire band commanded the stage like no other. Their music is as hard driving rock ‘n’ roll as you’re going to get…..authentic to the core. Five individuals, each bringing their own unique talent and personality that together make up Rival Sons. Jay Buchanan’s emotionally powerful voice penetrates you to the core, taking you with him wherever he goes. Scott Holiday’s guitar, clean and dirty at the same time (if that’s even possible) can grind you into the ground or take you for a ride up and down those frets, bringing you to your knees. Mike Miley is a precision pile-driver behind the drums…..powerful, forceful with some truly tasty cymbal work. Miley’s distinctive drumming is far more than just a back beat, you feel the pulse right in your gut while your heart matches him stroke for stroke.

Jay Buchanan

Scott Holiday aka mrfuzzlord

Mike Miley aka mileyondrumz

Dave Beste’s basslines jive beautifully with Miley’s tub thumping, the two of them creating the thundering sound that is the backbone of Rival Sons. At the back or far to one the side of the stage perches Todd “gorgeous eyes” Ögren on keys and backing vocals. Ögren is the closing link of the Rival Sons chain. Classically training, his fingers dance across the keyboard, adding yet another layer of richenss to the music. His harmonies are easily a match for Buchanan’s voice. The beard? Just because he can. When he wins the contest for longest beard he’ll shave it off…..maybe.

I love photographing these guys. The stage is alive with movement, colour and music. One of these days maybe I’ll make it out of “the pit”…… In the meantime captures above and below.

Mike Miley and Dave Beste

Todd Ögren aka toddthemofo

Do Your Worst – Rival Sons

Electric Man – Rival Sons

Shooting Stars – Rival Sons

Open My Eyes – Rival Sons

Loving You – Minnie Ripperton

The Sensual World – Kate Bush

Kate Bush’s First Concert in 35 Years

We’re Not In Kansas Anymore – Courage My Love

Not A Suicide – Gene Pool

Starless – King Crimson

Three drummers!!!!


All photographs ©2019 Pat Blythe, A Girl With A Camera except the photograph labeled Pomp is ©2017-2019 Anderson Creative


Pat’s column appears every Wednesday.

Contact us at:

dbawis-buttonIn “real” life Pat Blythe has spent the past 32 years as a consultant and design specialist in the telecommunications industry. After an extended absence Pat is now heading back to the GTA clubs, immersing herself in the local music scene, tasting what’s on offer, talking to people and writing once again — sharing her passions and her deep love of music. Together for 34 years, Pat also worked alongside her late husband Christopher Blythe, The PictureTaker©, who shot much  of the local talent (think Goddo, Frank Soda Little Red-headed dancing girland the Imps, Plateau, Buzzsaw, Hellfield….) as well as national and international acts,  Currently making her way through 40 years of Chris’s archives, Pat is currently compiling a photographic history of the local GTA music scene from 1975 to 1985. It continues to be a work in progress. Oh…..and she LOVES to dance!

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